#164–The second time around . . .


I had my second round of chemo last Wednesday––a week ago. It went well. No glitches and the drug that takes so long, only took three hours to drip in (down from 3 1/2 hours the time before). The other three can all be done in a little over an hour.

All settled in and letting the first drug drip in.

All settled in and letting the first drug drip in.

Our appointment was 8:15 a.m., which means I got up at 4:15 a.m. so we could leave at 6:15 a.m. When you get there early, you get to leave early, so we were home by 4 p.m. My neighbor Hope took me over. I’m next scheduled for chemo on December 3 and my friend Connie Bradley will take me over. Since trips to Eugene for chemo involve nearly the whole day, I try to spread it around and not pick on one person all the time. Fortunately, I have more than one friend volunteering.

This second time around, I’ve felt good up until yesterday. Good energy. On Monday, I even drove into town for several errands with my sister along and then drove up the coast to see the ocean. It was a beautiful day.

One of the errands was to pick up the 14 illustrations that Karen Nichols has completed for the book.

Here are the 14 illustrations for my  upcoming book about animlas I have known.

Here are the 14 illustrations for my upcoming book about animlas I have known.

And Bob completed the editing and brought it over last Friday. I put in the changes this weekend. I agreed with him on all but one. I didn’t change it. And yesterday, in spite of not feeling too good, I got the Acknowledgments and Credits page completed. At least as far as I can—I just put X’s for the page numbers. All I have left is to put all the photos on a flash drive. Then I’ll arrange a hand-off to Bob. He’ll then have everything he needs to lay out the book.

Edna arrived about 5:30 p.m. last Friday after taking the train and bus from Eugene to Florence. (A total of 23 hours.) Not the fastest way to travel, but Amtrak connects with Porter Stage, which comes to Florence. It does not connect with the airport.

We’ve been having a wonderful visit. She has her iPad and has showed me all the photos from the trip to Italy that I missed out on. She had an absolutely wonderful time. Now we’ve both been there once; in a few years, we’ll go again together.

Since she’s been here, I didn’t feel like I was sick until yesterday. I reactivated a muscle pull in my upper right thigh Monday evening. It makes me walk like a very slow moving old lady. And my back began hurting everytime I was upright for very long. Ibuprofan and resting my back on a recliner really helps. The back pain is probably from the Neulasta, which is a stimulant for new white blood cells. The doctor said it could cause my bones to hurt.

Edna and Groucho relax in the living room with the woodstove going.

Edna and Groucho relax in the living room with the woodstove going.

Yesterday Edna really earned her keep. She did some house cleaning, brought in lots of wood for the woodstove and made scones. We had my neighbors Hope, Cliff, and Jayne over for tea. It was lovely. Hope has taken me for both of my chemo trips.

I still have a good appetite and only have to worry about nausea when I’m taking a couple of pills. I gag nearly every time I try to take the Prednisone or ginseng capsules. I’m done with the Prednisone for this time, but the ginseng is hard to take. The smell and taste of it come through in spite of the capsule. I totally hide it in applesauce before taking it. It reminds me of when I took pills as a little kid.

Hope, sent me a link about a double blind Mayo Clinic trial with American ginseng from Wisconsin. It seems to be helpful in combating chemo fatigue and especially the longer the chemo goes on. So I have been taking the recommended dosage of 2,000 mg a day. It seems to be helping with both the chemo fatigue and chemo brain fog. I seem to be more alert and feeling okay except for the leg, which is better today, and my back. Both leg and back feel okay when I sit or lie down.

Today I ordered a couple of head wraps (like turbans) and some curly bangs for when I don’t want to wear the wig. By the time I get to the sixth cycle, I’ll really have my act together.

This weekend is the Victorian Belles Holiday Gift Sale and Connie Bradley, Karen Nichols, and I planned on being a part of it at the Events Center at Three Rivers Casino to sell our books. This would be our fourth year to do it together. It’s become a tradition. The Belles always invite us to have a table or two of booksellers. I even wrote a press release that ran in the paper twice. I’d really like to be there.

If I feel up to it, I’ll attend. It lasts from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. both Friday and Saturday, but I won’t stay the whole time each day and with Edna here, I can have her spell me. So we’ll see. I’ll let you know how it goes next week.


About crossingsauthor

Judy Fleagle spent 22 years teaching 1st and 2nd grades and 21 years as editor/staff writer with Oregon Coast and Northwest Travel magazines.Since 2009, she has written five books: "Crossings: McCullough's Coastal Bridges," "The Crossings Guide to Oregon's Coastal Spans," "Around Florence," "Devil Cat and Other Colorful Animals I Have Known," and "The Oregon Coast Guide to the UNEXPECTED!!!."
This entry was posted in Colorful Animals I Have Known and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to #164–The second time around . . .

  1. Laurel G. says:

    Judy, the wig really works on you! I zoomed in on the photo of your illustrations for animal stories book. They are darling. Looking forward to that read. Evelyn is right, there are a lot of long distance fans watching the blog for updates, and we’re so glad to be kept informed–Fleagle-style. Hugs, Laurel – Gold Beach

    • Love you, Laurel! Your response made me laugh and cry. I just received the cover illustration today and I really like it. However, Bob is in charge of designing the cover. He may want to use it or a photo I’ve got or something else. We’ll see. We work well together and know how to negotiate with each other. I don’t always get my way.

  2. Gloria DUmler says:

    So glad you are feeling better and that Edna has been able to be there with you, helping out and having fun.

    • (I can spell my own last name. Really. Most of the time.)

      • I made it through the second cycle of chemo and it was okay because Edna was here. I had fewer down days and they weren’t as bad as the first cycle. I miss Edna already! My neighbor took her to the bus about an hour ago, since she was going into town at the same time. We’ve had a very good visit. Loved your “what doctors really mean” card! Thanks!

  3. Evelyn Leach says:

    Hi, Judy! Very pleased you’re doing so well. Chemo can be a real “equalizer.” But, of course, being Judy, you’re gliding along. Side effects are to be expected, but you sound like you’re handling all this better than the average person. I’m sure you’re grateful for the support from your sister, friends, and neighbors. (There’s a whole lot of other folks out here lending support, too, even if it is long distance!) 🙂

  4. Judy Fleagle says:

    I’ve had very little energy the past couple of days. So I’m really grateful that Edna is here. I’ll hang tough, Phyl!

  5. Hope says:

    See you at the Victorian Belles. As usual, enjoyed your blog. The High Tea was so lovely. Thanks so much to the both of you.

    • Not sure I’m going to feel up to going on Friday. But I will try to on Saturday. Not much energy today. So glad Edna is here. And so glad you enjoyed the tea–so did we.

  6. Phyllis Bright says:

    So glad your sister is there and seems you are doing excellent as I see it. Hang tough – I know you will. Think of you often! Love, Phyl

Comments are closed.